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According to the Onion, anyway.
Having actual physical locations was always our ultimate intent, and we are proud to provide our customers with the convenient option of driving to a nearby Netflix store and renting any available movie for just $3.99 per title.
We will also be implementing late fees to help ensure films are returned on time—that way no one misses a chance to rent the hottest new releases.
[Netflix spokesman Henry] Regis [also] confirmed that the new physical locations will be open from 10 a.m. to 8 p.m. and include easy after-hours drop-off boxes.
The FCC and Dept of Justice recently approved a merger between Comcast and NBC Universal. Comcast is a cable provider. NBC Universal is a content producer. Netflix is a content provider. Comcast has sworn to do battle with Netflix because they have competing interests. This merger gives Comcast a leg-up on Netflix because they could take away Netflix's license to provide NBC Universal content.
This is a big deal and probably the most important reason why this merger is a terrible idea for consumers. Minnesota Senator Al Franken agrees:
As you probably know, I hate this merger. Not only will it raise prices on TV subscriptions, it will give the combined entity incredible power to stifle competition from online sources like Netflix. I'm hearing that Comcast is already preparing to pull NBC Universal's programming from Netflix when it's next up for review. They [Comcast] aren't stupid and they want to shut it down.
When he says Comcast isn't stupid, he refers to the competitive edge that Netflix has over Comcast. Namely that customers prefer to pay for content they actually want to watch as opposed to a forced subscription to 150 channels of shit.
There is a caveat. Apparently the FCC mandated certain unknown criteria in exchange for its approval of the merger. Whether there is any restriction on dealings with companies like Netflix remains to be seen.
Subzin.com is a search engine for movie quote lovers. Type in a phrase and it will pull up the movie and tell you when the quote appears in the movie. It is fairly fast and accurate. Bonus point: It found all the Ruthless People quotes I could throw at it. Bonus point bonus: It has a direct link to movie's page on Netflix.
Here's an interesting take on Netflix's battle with Time-Warner (Hollywood).
Netflix has recently announced deals with ABC/Disney to begin to show TV shows in their currents seasons. This is Netflix's entry into the cable TV business.
Look what Netflix did to the DVD rental business. It turned it upside down. Blockbuster is bankrupt and it's only weapon in the battle to stay alive is the 30 day window in which Netflix agreed not to ship new releases until 30 days after their release. Blockbuster has tried to exploit it through advertising. It's their only hope.
Now the target becomes cable TV. Imagine a provider who lets you decide what programs you want to watch while not making you pay for the others? Who watches Lifetime shows? The Hallmark Channel? Are you kidding me? Telemundo? Fifteen home shopping channels? The list is endless.
I welcome Netflix into this battle and agree with the writer when he claims Netflix will emerge victoriously.
Visitors to this site know how I feel about Netflix. There is some interesting news out of Redbox this week. The video kiosk company is courting Wal-Mart and Amazon as a potential partner in the streaming business. This is America, and we love competition. Ultimately, this can only be good for the consumer.
Mark Cuban, owner of the Dallas Mavericks, is pretty keen on digital content. He recently posted about how Netflix could ultimately control the entire streaming universe.
The premise is really based on the business models of each of the players. Google doesn't pay for content, it provides ad revenue based on the views that content generates. Netflix pays up front for the content. The broadcast channels receive revenue from content distributors for the rights to transmit programming.
So the only one who doesn't pay up front for content is Google. There are forces out there that say the broadcasts channels should merely give Google TV the rights to transmit the programming in exchange for ad revenue, because that is how Google operates.
In Cuban's words,
So giving the same content they not only charge their distributors for, but also charge their local affiliates for to Google for nothing or for a share of revenue ? STUPID.
All you internet pundits want the broadcast networks to give the content away for free. THAT IS STUPID.
In 2000, Blockbuster could have acquired
Netflix for a paltry $50 million. Instead, Blockbuster declined that deal and decided to force the fledgling Netflix out of business.
Today Blockbuster is in bankruptcy and Netflix is worth $8 billion with a B.
Image via CrunchBase
I have praised Netflix in this space. If you were to sign up, Netflix would provide you with a 14 day free trial. But through a special offer, I can extend that offer to you, my friend, for an entire month.
Leave your email in the comments, or send me a private message, and I will forward the link to you.
If you like movies and TV on DVD, you won't be dissatisfied.